Novak Djokovic delivered a masterclass Wednesday to race into the Australian Open semi-finals and edge nearer to a twenty second Grand Slam title with a straight-sets thrashing of Andrey Rublev. The Serbian was within the zone to blitz previous the Russian 6-1, 6-2, 6-4 on Rod Laver Area and meets Tommy Paul for a spot in Sunday’s last. The unseeded American Paul defeated countryman Ben Shelton 7-6 (8/6), 6-3, 5-7, 6-4. “I can’t be happier with my tennis, actually,” stated Djokovic, after reaching a tenth semi-final at Melbourne Park. Solely Roger Federer (15) and Jack Crawford (11) have been there extra typically.
“I have been taking part in very stable from the again of the court docket and I actually love taking part in in these circumstances and this court docket,” the 35-year-old informed Rod Laver Area.
“Some actually shut video games that we had,” he added. “Andrey is a good opponent, nice participant. I’ve tons of respect for him, one of many largest forehands, quickest gamers on the tour.
“I knew what the sport plan was and it was necessary that I discovered my greatest tennis.”
Djokovic’s quest for a record-extending tenth Australian Open title has been removed from easy, tormented by a left hamstring pressure suffered en path to the title at Adelaide this month.
He struggled bodily within the early rounds however was dominant throughout his fourth-round demolition of Alex de Minaur, and he confirmed few issues towards Rublev.
Victory for the red-hot favorite propelled him right into a forty fourth Grand Slam semi-final to shut the hole on Federer’s all-time file of 46.
In one other astonishing file, he clocked a twenty sixth consecutive match-win on the Australian Open to equal Andre Agassi’s Open-era file for longest streak on the first Grand Slam of the yr.
The indicators have been ominous for Rublev earlier than the match even began.
In distinction to Djokovic’s excellent file in Melbourne, Rublev — who was taken to 5 units by Holger Rune within the fourth spherical — got here into the conflict with a 0-6 file in Grand Slam quarter-finals.
After a shaky begin when he served double fault to open proceedings, Djokovic rapidly settled right into a rhythm.
The Russian, who additionally despatched down a double fault to start out, struggled early on.
His serving jitters persevered and when the Serb labored a break level at 2-1 he double-faulted once more in response.
Djokovic was on hearth and raced to a 4-1 lead earlier than changing a fifth break level to hurry 5-1 clear and clinch the set in 39 minutes.
Rublev had no solutions to his precision and energy.
Djokovic continued in the identical vein within the second set, grabbing his alternative in sport 4 after a 16-shot rally when Rublev blinked first with a backhand error.
One other break left Rublev annoyed and castigating himself as he slumped two units down.
He took a rest room break in between units, however it did not work as Djokovic got here out with extra venomous pictures and broke his serve within the opening sport and by no means let up.
(This story has not been edited by String Reveals employees and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)
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